Taking cues from other compilations of obscure and rough-hewn blues, R&B, and early rock & roll, this 19-song import focuses on the hard driving and over-the-top side of roots music. Rife with blues shouters and bristling guitar work, Lookey-Dookey offers a wealth of material rarely touched by the major record companies. And while there are such high-profile names like Champion Jack Dupree and Big Maybelle listed on the sleeve, this collection is mostly packed with the rarefied likes of Guitar Crusher, Bunker Hill, and Joltin' Joe Howard. There's plenty of humor, too, and even a hint of vaudeville with lounge production numbers like Bobby Louis' "Fire of Love" and King Coleman's "Lookey-Dookey." Furthering the variety-show feel are Hill and Piano Red's respective takes on the inimitable singing talents of Little Richard and Cab Calloway. More original fare comes by way of Bobby Long and His Satellites' garage rocker "Mojo Workout," Louis Jones' manic "Rock 'n' Roll Bells," and the Continentals' hopped-up doo wop cut "Don't Do It Baby." Maybe not as top-flight as venerable volumes in the Stompin' or Savage Kick collections, but still good fun for fans of raunchy and rare rockin' blues.
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